Fellowship Community Church

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August 17, 2016

Posted by Pastor Rick John on

Encourage-O-Gram
August 17, 2016
 
Greetings in the Name of Jesus!
 
I was reading Psalm 71 today and I was struck by the optimistic attitude revealed in verse 14:
 
NIV Psalm 71:14
As for me, I will always have hope; I will praise You more and more.
 
How does the writer do it? He has been under attack in words (10-11) and threats (4). But he affirms his hope is still present. He continues to find hope in God who is his Savior (1) and Sovereign (5). This pattern of living by faith began in his youth and is continuing into his old age (5-9). Surely with an attitude like this he will finish well and receive a rich welcome into heaven.
 
I also see that he is persistent in prayer (2-3) and he expects a quick answer from the Lord (12). He makes some requests for a just outcome to his dilemma (27-28) which frankly alarm me. But he is being honest and God does promise to repay (see Romans 12:19—we should abstain from seeking vengeance).
 
He concludes his song with praise which is another vital practice for those who remain optimistic. Praise that breaks into my day surely lifts my spirits and draws me nearer to God. I have even been known to sing (quietly) as I praise my Savior. I would call us all to praise and worship our Lord in any and every situation. This seems to me to be the path to “restoration” as he requests in verse 19-21:
 
NIV Psalm 71:19-21
Your righteousness, God, reaches to the heavens, You who have done great things. Who is like You, God? 20 Though You have made me see troubles, many and bitter, You will restore my life again; from the depths of the earth You will again bring me up. 21 You will increase my honor and comfort me once more.
 
If this writer could be optimistic, how much more should we be since we know the Savior who died, rose again, and lives forever! As long as the Savior lives—we have hope!
 
NIV  1 Peter 1:3 Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In His great mercy He has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,
 
This Friday night we will be hosting a free showing of the movie, God is Not Dead 2.  All are warmly welcome to attend. For the next two Sunday mornings, we will be focused on our privilege of sharing hope to all!  I have entitled this series: “Stay Ready!”  
 
This Sunday at noon, our Eleven:18 Student Ministries will be hosting a picnic for all students and parents. Please plan to attend . . . it will be both fun and informative!
 
I will be leading an early morning Bible study this fall beginning on Wednesday, September 14, from 6:30 to 7:30 a.m. More information will be available next week.
 
Please be in prayer for our Elders as we will be praying and planning together at a Retreat on September 9-10. Our desire is to lead our church on God’s agenda. Pray that His agenda will be more clearly revealed to us.
 
Live in the certainty of God’s love and grace!
 
Pastor Rick

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